Charleston Citrus: Plant Now for Delicious Fruit this Fall

Charleston Citrus

Enjoy a taste of summer well into the fall by planting citrus trees now; many delicious citrus fruits are native to Charleston and thrive in the southeastern US climate. When you visit your local garden center, ask the planting professionals about some options that you have when it comes to citrus.

 

Some hardy and widely available citrus for your landscaping include:

 

Red Navel Oranges.

 

Red Naval Orange are an excellent choice for the Carolinas with a peak harvest in the winter starting in December. Oranges do well in a climate with hot summers and mild winters, which makes the fruit sweet and tender. Trying to grow your orange tree from seed may be a disappointing venture, and it takes a tree seven-years to yield fruit. Buy trees and plant in a spot that gets at least six-hours of sun daily in well-drained soil away from your lawn, grass, or other foliage. Use mulch to protect the young trunk and topsoil but allow at least six-inches of space around the trunk when mulching to prevent rot.

 

Grapefruit.

 

You don’t have to be as far south as Florida to grow your own Grapefruit; grapefruit trees do require warm temperatures and mild weather to grow properly – which makes the Carolinas an ideal environment.  Plant your young tree in full sun with well-drained soil. Use a lot of loam in the topsoil and mulch but leave around ten-inches around the trunk to prevent damage or injury. Plant your grapefruit in the spring or fall, and allow at least 12-feet between your paths, drives, or home to allow room for the tree to grow and spread.

 

Mandarins.

 

You know those cute little tangerines that are so popular around Christmas? You can plant your own thin-skinned, sweet Mandarin oranges. Plant young tree in full sun and buy trees that are at least three-years old as that is how long it takes for them to flower and yield fruit. Be warned: Mandarin trees can grow up to 25-feet high and just as wide, so plant in a spot with plenty of room for spreading. The Mandarin tree is vulnerable to cold temperatures and can be easily damaged when transported or moved around; it is possible to grow trees from seeds, or you can purchase root stock to give your tree a head-start.

 

Lemons and Limes.

 

South Carolina is perfect for lemon and lime trees, as they do best in daytime temps of around 70-degrees Fahrenheit, and night temps around 55-degrees. Lemon and lime trees should be watered well and planted in full sun. Too much shade will impact the tree’s flowering, which could result in a smaller yield of fruit. You should fertilize your trees with a mixture that contains a lot of nitrogen, as this is what helps them thrive.

 

Imagine enjoying your own fresh citrus this fall and reaping the rewards of these four hardy fruit trees. The climate is perfect for citrus in the Carolinas; visit your Terra Bella Garden Center to talk to the experts about the best options for your distinct property, preferences, and budget.